Edward J. Lee is a corporate partner in the New York office of Kirkland & Ellis LLP. Ed’s practice focuses on mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance and shareholder activism defense. 

Lawdragon has named Ed as one of the 500 leading lawyers in America, and IFLR1000 and Expert Guides have recognized him as a leading lawyer within the M&A practice. Law360 named Ed as one of six “Rising Stars” for M&A in 2018.

Ed has significant experience advising on both cross-border and domestic transactions, as well as on spin-offs and carve-outs, joint ventures, and initial public and other securities offerings. In 2019 and 2020, Ed has advised on M&A transactions valued at over $300 billion. Ed has also advised numerous boards of directors and senior management teams in connection with unsolicited takeover proposals, shareholder activism campaigns, and other contested situations involving, among others, Elliott Management, Jana Partners, Third Point, Pershing Square, Relational Investors, and Starboard Value.

He has advised a broad range of public and private clients across industries, including software and technology, aerospace & defense, media and telecom (TMT), industrial, chemicals, health care and pharmaceuticals, consumer goods and retail, energy, real estate and financial institutions.

Ed is a frequent speaker on M&A and shareholder activism, including co-chairing PLI’s Shareholder Activism conference in 2018–2020.


Memberships & Affiliations

Board of Directors, Harvard Law School Association of New York City

David Rockefeller Fellow, Partnership for New York City, Class of 2017–2018

Council of Korean Americans

Board of Directors & Co-Chair of the Corporate Law Committee, the Asian American Bar Association of New York

Leadership Advisory Group for the Korean American Lawyers Association of Greater New York

Board of Directors, Cornell University’s College of Human Ecology Alumni Association


Admissions & Qualifications

  • New York


  • Harvard Law SchoolJ.D.cum laude
  • Cornell UniversityB.S.